fbpx Skip to main content

Life Lessons Learned From A Depression Era Quilter

I have learned many life lessons while quilting. Sharing them now and then on this blog. Today I’d like to share one I learned from a depression area quilter. While I never her knew her in person. Her influence has made me who I am today.

One of the things I love most about old quilts is, the way their creators made do. I have a several grandmother’s garden blocks. These blocks were made in the 1930’s. The hexagons finish at one inch.  I have a favorite among these old blocks. What makes it my favorite is one of the hexagons in the final round doesn’t match the others. It is made of a slightly different fabric. What makes this round even better is that the quilter pieced that last piece to make it big enough to make her 1” hexie. I don’t know if I love this block because of her ingenious way of fixing her problem. Or because I love scrap quilts and that one pieced hexie gave the block a scrappy feel.

          If you are anything like me. You relate all to well with this quilter of yesteryear. You are going merrily along and bump! Things get off track from our original plan. What’s a girl to do?


We can cry. I’m down with a good cry now and then. It’s cleansing. We can throw in the towel. Hide that project in a box or bin. Pretend it never happened. There is even the option of giving it away. Let that mess be someone else’s problem. I get a lot of this when people donate to Quilty Hugs. Once again there is merit in moving on. No need to let our mistakes hold us back. Or we can follow the example of our quilter and her hexagons.


We can use what we have to move forward. Scrounge through our scraps. Use our talents. Discover new ones. Dig deep. And get to work! As Marie Forleo’s mother says, “Everything is figureoutable” (checkout her book if you don’t believe me.)

What we create may not be perfect in everyone’s eyes. There may be a few quilt police out there that will judge. Point out our mistakes and short comings. In fact, your biggest critic is most likely yourself. Let go of that judgement!

Because there are just as many who will be amazed by your ingenious solution. Many will love the character that was added by your creativity. My first quilt pattern came about because of this method. Who know? A quilting business could be born while trying to fix a math mistake.

Your scrappy make do ways make you human and loveable. They let others to see they are not alone in their imperfections. Allowing them to draw strength from your example. You could inspire them to move forward and be more. Just like my depression era quilter has inspired me.



One Comment

  • This Depression era quilt is so lovely–I really like the parts –together they make a wonderful statement…great fabrics –very vintage and looks like a memory quilt should…beautiful work hugs, Julierose

Leave a Reply